The latest news stories from the major news organizations in Cebu and Manila in the Philippines, the US and other countries.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

January 20, 2011 Major News Stories

January 20, 2011 Major News Stories
January 20, 2011 Major News Stories


Transport groups push P1 fare hike as oil prices soar

Nagbanta ng tigil-pasada ang mga transport group kapag mabigo sila sa pisong hirit na dagdag-pasahe sa jeep. Tumaas na naman kasi kanina ng piso ang presyo ng diesel at 75 centavos sa gasolina.

'Above normal rains won't stop until May'


MANILA, Philippines -  Above average rainfall will continue to affect the country until April or even May, state weather bureau PAGASA said Wednesday.

The state weather bureau confirmed the cold weather and rains other parts of the country are experiencing is still part of the La Niña phenomenon that started June of 2010.

Even thought very few tropical storms are expected the next few months, the rain is coming from other weather systems like the tail-end of a cold front.

PAGASA and the Department of Science and Technology also unveiled a new landslide early warning device, which was developed in partnership with the University of the Philippines.

The device is basically a segmented tube that is dug into the ground. When any portion of the ground moves, the movements are tracked by the device and sends an SMS to parties concerned.

The device will be made locally and the price will be less than the expensive gadgets that are available now.

ABS-CBN got a sneak peak of this device in 2009 when it was still in the lab testing stages at the University of the Philippines.

DOST said the device is now undergoing field testing.

Coastal, river settlers worry Talisay

by cebuweb

EARLY warning of oncoming typhoons and quick evacuation and relief assistance are the best measures the Talisay City Government can do to save riverbank and coastal dwellers, a city official yesterday said.

With no apparent resettlement sites for their transfer, settlers stay at their own risk, following the weather bureau’s warning that heavy rains will continue to persist until March this year.

“We really have to discuss this matter and look for ways for their transfer,” said Councilor Dennis Basillote, city council committee chairman on education and urban poor.

Region 7 has fewer dengue cases in first 2 weeks of 2011

by cebuweb

THE Department of Health’s weekly dengue report shows there are only 45 cases and no deaths recorded in Central Visayas in the first two weeks of the year.

The figure is 91 percent lower compared to the same period last year when health personnel recorded 510 cases, six deaths and a case fatality rate of 1.2 percent.

The report, gathered by the Regional Epidemiological Surveillance Unit (Resu), was taken from disease reporting units in the region from Jan. 1 to 15.

Chinese New Year a regular working day: Palace


MANILA, Philippines - President Benigno Aquino III on Wednesday thumbed down a proposal to declare the Chinese New Year, February 3, a holiday.

Curtail women OFWs to avoid abuse, says POEA

As a segment of overseas Filipino workers more prone to abuse and maltreatment, women should be restricted to work as domestic helpers and factory workers abroad, the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration said Wednesday.

Aquino: Only one group benefited from rice importation

It appears that only one person or group earned a windfall from the National Food Authority’s private-sector financed importation of 200,000 metric tons of rice in 2010, President Benigno Aquino said on Wednesday.

NFA administrator Lito Banayo "is puzzled why the manager’s checks of those given a chance to import came from only one bank,” Aquino said in a speech at the 65th anniversary of the Liberal Party.

“And it allegedly doesn’t stop there. The checks were in sequential order. It appears that only one group or one person benefited there,” he added.

In his report to President Aquino last week, Banayo said the private importation was given to favored contractors supposedly through a questionable first-come-first-served arrangement.

“Among the findings were: fictitious cooperatives and corporations were given the quotas, and qualifications standards were extremely liberal,” Banayo said in his executive summary submitted to the President.

In the same report, Banayo said an audit of NFA importation during the Arroyo years showed that it was overpriced by an average of $60 per metric ton over 10 years.

In the last three years of the Arroyo administration, Banayo said, the overpricing was by an average of $125 per metric ton.

For incoming kindergarten pupils Pre-registration set on Jan. 27

by By Ryan Christopher J. Sorote/FPL

The Department of Education has scheduled a pre-registration on January 27 for incoming kindergarten pupils in the next school year.

DepEd, school administrators to hold students congress

by By Ryan Christopher J. Sorote/FPL

The Cebu City Private Schools Administrators’ Association, Inc. (CCPSAA) in partnership with DepEd Cebu City Division will conduct two social development programs for both students and administrations with the theme “Reflecting on the Past, Towards Transformational Leadership.”

The CCPSAA will host a Students’ Congress on January 21, 2011 at 8:00 am to 4:00 pm at the Aznar Coliseum and at 4:30 pm to 7:30 pm for the Administrators’ Forum at Southwestern University – MainCampus, Urgello St., Cebu City.

Arturo Tangal, President of CCPSAA and Harvest Christian School International, said that “the primary objective of this activity is to promote leadership among the youth by reflecting on past historic events.”

Tangal believes that through “good governance and transformational leadership systematic change” for our society can be achieved. There will also be a movie screening of the film “Laban: The Meaning of the EDSA Revolution”.

Invited speakers and guests will include some private individuals and personalities from both the Senate and House of Representatives known during the first EDSA or the bloodless People Power revolution of 1987 that ended the over 21 years of dictatorship of then president Ferdinand Marcos.

The delegation will be headed by former president Fidel Ramos together with Agapito "Butz" Aquino, Bayan Muna Rep. Mariano Piamonte, Jr., Senators Gregorio Honasan, Aquilino “Nene’’ Pimentel and Francisco “Kit’’ Tatad.

Renowned EDSA broadcaster June Keithley-Castro of Radio Bandido, Historian and columnist Manuel Quezon III and veteran broadcaster Cheche Lazaro are also expected.

High ranking DepEd Officials both from the national and local offices are also expected to attend the said event.

All colleges and universities in the province of Cebu are encouraged to send their delegates for the Students’ Congress. Delegates are asked to prepare P150 for the various activities of the congress.

Participants are expected to wear their school uniform during the congress for easy identification and uniformity.

Organizers are expecting around 3,000 participants for the Students Forum composing of grade school and high school students from the different schools in the province.

Tungal added that this Friday’s activity is the very first Student’s Congress of its kind done in the country where key personalities of our cartful past will be gathered to discuss on the importance of the Filipino freedom.

Meanwhile, public and private school administrators, principals, directors and coordinators are also invited to join in the School Administrators Forum. Registration fee is at P300 which will already include dinner and their certificates.

Interested parties are requested to contact CCPSAA secretariat Luz Sausal at 412-9610 or 0909-8514540/ 0922-3721813.

DepEd: No pomp and pageantry, politics in graduation rites

Low-cost but still special. Graduation rites in public schools nationwide should be spared from “pomp and pageantry” as government continues to push for austerity in all public agencies, Education Secretary Armin Luistro has ordered this week.

DepEd Order No. 4 barred all bureau directors, regional, school division and city education chiefs, school principalsand teachers from collecting any fee from students for the conduct of graduation rites in March.

The austerity call comes amid rising living costs—fare and gas prices among them—and while Malacañang reeled over divided public opinion about President Benigno Aquino's recent purchase of a luxury car.

“Public school heads, teachers and other DepEd personnel are not allowed to collect any graduation fees or any kind of contribution for graduation rites,” read Luistro's order dated January 17.

Parents' associations “may solicit voluntary contributions” for graduation rites and celebrations, but teachers and school officials shall not be involved.

Reiterating a long observed policy in public schools, Luistro also ordered all schools to require “no extravagant special attire” for students to wear during their march and must not hold rites in an “extraordinary venue.”

“Graduation rites should not be exercises in splurging and display of pomp and pageantry, but should be Spartan affairs that exhort civic duties, a sense of community and personal responsibilities,” Luistro said.

“[They] should be memorable, exciting and animated without the baggage of extra cost and excessive spending,” he added in the order.

Luistro also called on schools to spare graduation rites from politics. Politicians are frequently invited as special guests and speakers in graduation ceremonies in bothpublic and private schools.

“The graduation rites should be conducted in an appropriate, solemn ceremony befitting the graduating students and their parents and shall not, in any way, be used as a venue for political forum,” said Luistro.

Some 1.18 million fourth year high school students and 1.83 million sixth graders are expected to graduate in March.

2 persons leap from skywalk, bridge; cops stop another

by dr_tangarorang

CEBU CITY -- A woman jumped from the old Mactan-Mandaue Bridge Wednesday afternoon, about six hours after a man jumped from a pedestrian overpass here.

Twelve hours later, police were still busy trying to stop another man from jumping from the Marcelo Fernan Bridge.

Of the three, the unidentified woman suffered the most. She was declared in critical condition Wednesday afternoon.

Dr. Oscar Quirante, head of the Mandaue District Hospital, said the woman claimed to work in a restaurant within JY Square in Barangay Lahug, Cebu City.

Wearing the gray pants and yellow-green shirt she had on when she jumped, the woman was transferred from Mandaue to the Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center in Cebu City.

Fishermen saved her shortly after her leap, and a team from the Accident Emergency Response Team rushed her to the hospital.

In the other incident, a 53-year-old man who sells newspapers hurt himself by jumping from a pedestrian overpass on Osmeña Blvd., Cebu City, past 9 a.m.

Romeo Golosino, of Barangay Sambag I, fractured his leg and was taken to the Cebu City Medical Center for an operation. He reportedly waited for the road to be free of traffic before leaping. He landed feet first on the concrete road.

Romeo's twin sister, Juliet, in an interview over RGMA radio dySS, said her brother has long been suffering from a blurred vision in one eye.

She said Romeo left the house at 5 a.m. Wednesday to get his newspapers.

Barangay Kamputhaw Councilor Jeffrey Tumulak, also a radio dySS reporter, said he is a friend of Romeo's and learned that the latter owed his dealer more than P300.

This reportedly bothered Romeo.

The dealer, however, said Romeo's unpaid account has been written off.

In the third incident, an unidentified man kept the authorities busy for more than five hours when he camped out on one of the towers of the Marcelo Fernan Bridge.

Police and firemen waited for him 40 feet below.

A Special Weapons and Tactics (Swat) operative went up and tried to arrest him, but backed off after the man threatened to drop a 12-inch bolo on him.

Aside from the bolo, the man also carried a sack, which he tied to the waist-high railings on top of the tower.

SFO1 Atilano Berido of the Bureau of Fire Protection, who sat with a sniper on top of the tower across from the man's perch, said the suspect kept on kissing an item, believed to be a rosary.

Lapu-Lapu City Police Chief Anthony Obenza said the man was not a likely jumper.

The police may file against him a complaint for alarm and scandal and concealing a deadly weapon.

At 6:40 p.m., firefighters put up a 20-foot lighting tower with 16 bulbs, each the size of a basin, to illuminate the suspect's position.

Still, the man did not yield.

By 9 p.m., an aerial ladder from Cebu City's fire bureau arrived and was set up, so lawmen could approach the man without having to use the tower's built-in ladder.

Obenza said the surveillance camera operator sighted the man around 4 p.m. and alerted the police.

It was the same operator who alerted the police when the woman earlier jumped from the Mandaue-Mactan Bridge.

Flyover plans questioned

by cebuweb

THREE new flyovers planned in the different areas of Cebu City got objections from officials.

Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama, Cebu City Traffic Operations Management (Citom) Chairman Sylvan Jakosalem and Metro Cebu Traffic Council Chairman Bunny Pages all agreed the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) 7 should first finish the flyovers that have been left incomplete.

Jakosalem explained the flyover project included the widening of the side roads.

The road along Park Lane Hotel should be widened to avoid jams if a vehicle plans to turn right, go straight to the Cebu Business Park or turn left towards Barangay Luz.

The side roads on the side of Barangay Luz and Grand Convention Center should also have two lanes.

Jakosalem remembered the late Citom chairman Rogelio “Jingjing” Osmeña gave a resolution to DPWH that no new flyover should be made until the national office solves the problem surrounding the Archbishop Reyes flyover.

Pages also questioned the need to make a new flyover.

“We would like to ask the National Government, through the encouragement of the local government unit, to make a master plan rather than use Band-Aid solutions like putting up another flyover,” Pages said.

Pages also said DPWH should also conduct a study or a survey if the people using the flyovers are satisfied with what these have done to the traffic in the city.

“If we are to consult the public using the flyovers, I think there will be an overwhelming no to new flyovers. Rather than spend on flyovers, there should be expansion of roads. They don’t want any more flyovers, they want better solutions,” said Pages.

Jakosalem also asked that DPWH consult Citom and the Cebu City Council, who know the traffic situation of Cebu City better.

Jakosalem said Citom was never consulted with the Archbishop Reyes flyover and the Banilad-Talamban flyover, and traffic in the latter area is still a problem.

He cited a plan to make at least eight public utility jeepney (PUJ) pocket lanes in the Banilad-Talamban area, four on each lane.

A pocket lane is a curve on the road that allows PUJs to load and unload passengers in the area, which is what Gaisano Country Mall has done.

Jakosalem said this could be done through donations from property owners who will be benefited by the pocket lanes, particularly those with commercial establishments.

Another solution is through expropriation.

In other areas, like in San Juan dela Montaña near Mabolo Church, part of the sidewalk can be converted to a pocket lane.

“If vendors can use it illegally, then we might as well convert (a part of it) as a pocket lane,” said Jakosalem.

The three flyovers will reportedly be built along Gen. Maxilom Ave., Gorordo Ave. near Asilo dela Milagrosa Church and M.J. Cuenco near the Carreta Cemetery.

A DPWH 7 official confirmed there is a plan to put up three new flyovers in the City.

Jakosalem also said the City cannot afford to widen the roads, so one of the proposals is the flaring of intersections.

He explained that there should be a lane for turning left or right so that the other vehicles will not be stuck.

Rama said he already took a clear stand against the new flyovers and hopes the Cebu City Council will do the same.

“There should be consultation and concurrence (from the City Government) should be secured,” said Rama.

All stakeholders should be consulted as well.

Meanwhile, Jakosalem said the Citom board met yesterday and passed a resolution congratulating Citom, its chief lawyer Rafael Yap and the enforcers for successfully manning the traffic during the Sinulog parade last Sunday.

Jakosalem also thanked Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia for opening the access road along Fuente Osmeña for the Sinulog weekend.

For alleged abandonment loot to sue Sinulog choreographer

by By Gregg M. Rubio/JMO

Daanbantayan Mayor Maria Luisa Loot will be filing charges against her nephew, Barry Luche, the choreographer of Tribu Kandaya, the town’s contingent in last Sunday’s Sinulog Grand Parade, for damages and breach of contract.

Loot got irked with the fact that Luche also choreographed the Tribu Himag-ulaw from Placer, Masbate that bagged first place in the Free Interpretation Category. Daanbantayan placed fourth in the same category.

Luche said he will face the charges and insists Loot has since been aware of his commitment with the Placer contingent. He said Masbate Governor Rizalina Seachon-Lañete and her son, Placer Mayor Joshur Judd, have given him their support.

“If she thinks ikalipay niya ang iyang buhaton nako bisag iya kong pag-umangkon…nga iya ko ipapriso ug pabayron og danyos nga dos milyones…wala ko’y mahimo kung di atubangon ang kaso,” Luche said.

Luche explained that Loot was already aware of his commitment to help Masbate defend its placement in the competition. The Placer contingent also placed first in the same category last year.

Luche said he himself did not understand why Loot allegedly insisted to join this year’s Sinulog, but he reportedly accepted to choreograph Daanbantayan’s contingent because he was apprehensive of saying “no” to either Loot or Judd.

“Kalooy sa Sto. Niño, nisulod sa top five ang duha. Kabalo na pud ang Daanbantayan nga mas monindot ang akong Placer (Masbate) kaysa ila kay mogasto gyud sa taman,” Luche said.

Luche also revealed that the real reason behind Daanbantayan’s participation in this year’s Sinulog is to show Governor Gwendolyn Garcia that the Daanbantayan contingent is a force to reckon with.

“Barry, tarunga jud nang ato tribu ha kay di ko gusto nga pikatan ko ni Gov (Gwen). Bantay lang jud ka,” Luche quoted Loot as saying.

In an interview over Bantay Radyo, Loot said she has accepted their defeat but was hurt by Luche’s move to abandon the contingent two weeks before the Sinulog Grand Parade. During this time, Luche reportedly focused his attention on the Placer contingent.

Loot said Luche gave no explanation when he left and alleged that her nephew is under the influence of drugs and is difficult to talk to.

“Ngano ni-hire man siya og adik? Bisa’g ingon ana iya tan-aw nako, at least daku-dako na pud ko og natampo sa akong lungsod,” Luche argued.

“I have already made Daanbantayan known in the Philippines even in the whole world by winning Sinulog several times,” he added.

Before Loot became mayor, Tribu Kandaya won first prize in the Sinulog Grand Parade in 1996, 1997 and 1998 with Luche as choreographer.

It also won in 2003 when Loot was already mayor, however, Loot decided not to continue participating in the Sinulog and instead launched the town’s yearly Haladaya Festival in 2004.

With choreography as his primary means of livelihood, this prompted Luche to choreograph contingents from as far as Mindanao, among which is the delegation from Placer, Masbate.

Bureau of Fire Protection reshuffles key posts

The Bureau of Fire Protection implemented a major revamp in its key positions early this week, in compliance with a recent Department of Interior and Local Government directive to base appointments on merit and competence.

The reshuffle affected mostly regional directors of the BFP, including its Metro Manila chief Senior Superintendent Pablito Cordeta, who was transferred to the Eastern Visayas region. Cordeta was replaced by Chief Superintendent Santiago Laguna, who came from the Bicol region.


BFP deputy chief for administration, Chief Superintendent Nimfa Cuartel, was reassigned to Calabarzon region and was replaced by Chief Superintendent Samuel Perez, formerly of Region 12.


ARMM regional director Senior Superintendent Alejandro Cagampang was transferred to Region 12; Senior Superintendent Warlito Daus of Caraga assumed the ARMM post while Senior Superintendent Aloveel Ferrer was appointed Caraga regional director.


Senior Superintendent Maria Luisa Hadjula, Central Luzon regional director, replaced Ferrer in Central Visayas; Chief Superintendent Ariel Barauyuga was appointed regional director of Central Luzon.

Further, Chief Superintendent Victoriano C. Remedio is designated as the Director of the Directorate for Operations in the National Headquarters.


Other positions also affected are key positions in the national headquarters and even provincial fire marshal positions.


The revamp took effect on Monday. BFP Director Rolando Bandilla called the revamp a “positive adjustment” that would motivate officers to perform their duties more effectively.

Prosecutor asks Medellin mayor to answer allegations over aide’s shooting

by cebuweb

TWO other witnesses told a fact-finding team that government employee Edelberto Abao told them he had been accidentally shot by a mayor, who was aiming for a cat.

The report of the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) fact-finding team said the statements corroborated that of Abao’s son Edelito, also known as Bimbim.

DILG sides with barangays; Oliva says they merely ran out of cedulas

by cebuweb

BARANGAYS can’t be compelled to sign away their right to collect community taxes, the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) 7 said.

DILG 7 Director Dr. Pedro Noval said the requirement of Cebu City Treasurer Ofelia Oliva for barangays to sign such an undertaking is illegal.

Capitol Site village chief Manuel Guanzon has asked for his opinion on the collection of community taxes by the barangays. Guanzon has said they were forced by Oliva to waive their barangays’ right to collect these taxes.

City aims to make P974M today

by cebuweb

THE Cebu City Government hopes to collect P1.1 billion in business permit renewal fees today.

But City Treasurer Ofelia Oliva said that as of yesterday, they have only collected P125.7 million, which means they’ll need to collect P974 million to realize their assessment.

Town’s accountant not qualified, COA says

by cebuweb

MOALBOAL town designated as acting municipal accountant an employee who is not qualified for this position, the 2009 Commission on Audit (COA) report said.

Apart from that, the town’s inventory report of its properties, plants and equipment amounting to P73.4 million contained incomplete information.

The designation of Emelita Estimo, a bookkeeper, as acting municipal accountant violated a circular from the Civil Service Commission (CSC), state auditors said.

PNoy: I’m no Superman, I need Mar


President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III said he needs running mate and former senator Mar Roxas to decide on tough issues.

PNoy: LP needs help to carry out tough decisions


MANILA, Philippines - Anchoring his sentiments on the recent win of the Liberal Party (LP), President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III called on his party mates to help the administration introduce tough—but effective—decisions.

'Quit slacking around': House minority tells Aquino

by By RG Cruz, ABS-CBN News

MANILA, Philippines - Minority lawmakers in the House of Representatives on Wednesday called on President Benigno "Noynoy" Aquino to quit slacking around and go to work.

Brillantes law firm collecting P8M from Smarmatic


MANILA, Philippines - Newly-appointed Commission on Elections (Comelec) Chairman Sixto Brillantes said on Wednesday that his law firm is trying to collect P8 million from 2010 poll machine supplier Smartmatic on behalf of a client.

Appeals court upholds suspension of Comelec execs

The Court of Appeals has upheld the decision of the Office of the Ombudsman ordering the suspension of five Commission on Elections officials for their role in the controversial P690-million ballot secrecy folders scam.

Garcia lawyer claims Ombudsman promised cases' dismissal


MANILA, Philippines - The Office of the Ombudsman allegedly promised the dismissal of all cases against retired Major General Carlos F. Garcia, his wife Clarita, and children Ian Carl, Juan Paulo, and Timothy Mark when it signed the plea bargaining agreement with the former military comptroller.

Senators hit ex-AFP chief over Garcia plunder

by By Ryan Chua, ABS-CBN News

MANILA, Philippines - Senators believe a former high official of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) had knowledge of the alleged corrupt activities of former military comptroller Carlos Garcia and condoned it, while blasting the plea bargain agreement the Ombudsman struck with the accused former general.

Senate President Pro Tempore Jinggoy Estrada said Garcia could not have amassed hundreds of millions of pesos in allegedly ill-gotten wealth without the support of his superior, then Defense Secretary Angelo Reyes.

Reyes was Defense Secretary from 2001 to 2003, the same period Garcia was the AFP comptroller.

Reyes denies 'coddling' Garcia

by By Jojo Malig,

MANILA, Philippines – Former Armed Forces Chief of Staff and Defense Secretary Angelo Reyes denied on Wednesday any knowledge of the alleged corrupt activities of former military comptroller Carlos Garcia.

Manila wants quick end to communist rebellion

by By Mynardo Macaraig, Agence France-Presse

MANILA, Philippines - The Philippine government said Wednesday it hoped to end a decades-long communist rebellion in three years after both sides agreed to peace talks, but analysts warned the insurgency would likely drag on.

Attempt to rescue captured rebel leader thwarted—military

The Army claimed Wednesday it thwarted an attempt to rescue captured New People's Army leader Tirso Alcantara, who is being held in a military hospital in Fort Bonifacio while recuperating from a bullet wound sustained during his arrest earlier this month.

Lozano murder suspect identified: police

by By Jojo Malig,

Police have identified a suspect in the murder of used-car dealer Emerson Lozano and his driver Ernani Sencil, the head of a task force investigating the crime said on Wednesday.

Crime wave revives call to resurrect death penalty

by By Ryan Chua, ABS-CBN News

MANILA, Philippines - Amid a recent spate of crimes in the country, some senators are calling for the revival of the death penalty for heinous crimes.

Aquino against re-imposing death penalty

(UPDATE) President Benigno Aquino has said he would look into calls for the re-imposition of the death penalty but at the same time indicated that he’s against the implementation anew of capital punishment.

VP Binay backs death penalty revival

Saying that Filipinos need "discipline," Vice President Jejomar Binay on Wednesday joined calls for the re-imposition of death penalty in light of the perceived resurgence of heinous crimes in the country.

Ex-Chief Justice Puno willing to lead pro-Chacha coalition

Retired Chief Justice Reynato Puno on Wednesday said he is willing to head the coalition now being formed to push for Charter change, even as President Benigno Aquino III had earlier said amending the 1987 Constitution is not a priority of his administration.

Miriam wants protection for online journalists, bloggers


MANILA, Philippines - Sen. Miriam Defensor Santiago on Wednesday said online journalists and bloggers should be given the same kind of protection afforded to regular members of the broadcast and print media.

Bar exams moved to UST in November


The Supreme Court has announced that it has moved this year's Bar exams to November instead of September.

100,000 passports unclaimed at DFA

Did you know that up to 100,000 passports processed by the Department of Foreign Affairs during the past six months remain unclaimed?

$1: 44.260

$1: 44.260 (P44.55)

Euro 1: 59.6904

NTC: Text scams up by 55 percent in two years

As Congress moves to regulate the sale of prepaid SIM cards, new data showed a steady rise in reported text scams over the last two years.

Residents moved from risk areas in Brazil disaster zone

NOVA FRIBURGO—Brazilian officials Wednesday started moving thousands of people out of at-risk areas near Rio in a flooding disaster that has already left at least 727 people dead.

First burials as Australian flood crisis deepens

by Agence France-Presse

BRISBANE, Australia - Australia's flood-ravaged Queensland state on Wednesday began the grim task of burying its dead, as people in the sodden south fled a record deluge threatening to engulf homes.

Clinton cannot say whether China is friend or foe

WASHINGTON—Two years after the Obama administration launched a charm offensive with China, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton could not say Wednesday whether Beijing was a friend or foe.

Filipina sentenced to life in Bali for heroin trafficking

The lower court of Denpasar in Bali, Indonesia has sentenced a Filipina traveler to life imprisonment for drug trafficking, according to the Department of Foreign Affairs.

The DFA did not identify the Filipina, but said she was found carrying 2.4 kilos of heroin on July 12 by the authorities at the Ngurap Rai International Airport in Bali.

The suspected drug mule was one of the passengers of an Air Asia flight from Kuala Lumpur.

The embassy in the Indonesian capital "provided legal representation to the Filipina in her court appearances," said DFA spokesman Eduardo Malaya.

Malaysian police rescue 3 infants from being sold

Malaysian police say they have rescued three infants and two pregnant women and detained nine people believed to be involved in a syndicate selling babies.

Pinoy Pride 3: Barrera eyes revenge vs 'Boom Boom'


MANILA, Philippines – Mexican featherweight Alejandro "Zorrito" Barrera vowed to take revenge against Filipino boxer Rey “Boom Boom” Bautista in their much awaited rematch on January 29.

ASEAN eyes joint bid for 2030 World Cup

by Agence France-Presse

SINGAPORE -- Football-mad Southeast Asia may file a joint bid for the 2030 World Cup as part of efforts to forge closer ties among member countries, according to officials of the regional bloc.

Federer edges Simon in 5 sets at Australian Open

Defending champion Roger Federer edged Gilles Simon 6-2, 6-3, 4-6, 4-6, 6-3 in the second round of the Australian Open.

P.Noy sister visits Cebu cities today

by By Mitchelle L. Palaubsanon/LPM

Presidential sister Pinky Abellada will be in Cebu today to witness the blessing of ten daycare classrooms in the cities of Cebu, Mandaue, Talisay and Danao.

"Our immediate target then was to ground break at least three classrooms. But by God’s grace, Ms. Pinky Abellada together with the rest of AGAPP Trustees will not only bless three classrooms but 10 classrooms/libraries," said Gabby Cruz, a local representative for Aklat, Gabay, Aruga tungo sa Pag-Angat at Pag-Asa (AGAPP) Foundation Inc.

        AGAPP supports the education sector, especially on the Department of Education’s thrust to improve the teaching of pre-school children.

Abellada is the chairperson and convenor of AGAPP.

Cruz said they are proud to deliver their promise of constructing 10 classrooms/libraries to Cebu.  

"We attribute our success partly due to your support in covering our advocacy. Hopefully, other companies/donors would also help in their respective communities," he said.

Cruz said they are targeting to build over a hundred classrooms in the country in a year and that Cebu is their top recipient.

Abellada and her team had inspected selected public elementary schools in depressed communities in the province last September 21.

Abellada is expected to arrive in Mandaue City at 8 a.m. today and will proceed to Danao City for the blessing of classrooms in Cambanay Elementary School.

She will then go back to Mandaue City to visit Subangdaku Elementary School and Labogon Elementary School, before proceeding to Pulangbato Elementary School in Cebu City.

Tomorrow, she will be at Jaclupan Elementary School in Talisay City.

Cruz said aside from providing books and other educational materials, they would also conduct training for teachers in storytelling.

Cruz explained that AGAPP's goal is to build 100 schools in 300 days and 2,000 classrooms/libraries until 2016 nationwide.

He added that so far, private companies and foundations had already committed to support their advocacy.

Edu Manzano denies marrying Pinky Webb

by by Boy Villasanta,

MANILA, Philippines – Actor Edu Manzano has denied marrying broadcaster Pinky Webb in a clandestine ceremony abroad.

Baron Geisler pleads not guilty in Yasmin Kurdi's sex harassment suit

Actor Baron Geisler pleaded innocent to charges that he sexually harassed actress Yasmien Kurdi in 2009, during his arraignment here on Wednesday.

Filipino tourists told: Fly now to India, get visa later

Filipinos who plan their trips on short notice can start flying to India without the hassles of processing a visa in the Philippines.

The Indian government has announced that tourists from the Philippines, as well as from Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam, may choose to process their Indian visas even after they have landed. Since the start of the year, India has implemented its visa-on-arrival scheme to attract more Southeast Asian tourists.


To complement this move, Philippine Airlines has announced it has begun to fly six times weekly from Manila to New Delhi and back. Their operations include three nonstop flights between the two capitals and three flights routed via Bangkok.


In a statement, the Indian Embassy in Manila explained that visas-on-arrival will be valid for a maximum of 30 days. The embassy added that a tourist can avail of a visa-on-arrival twice a year at the most, with each visit spaced by at least two months.


The visa, which will be processed at a fee of $60, is non-extendable and non-convertible.


To get the visa, Filipino tourists must carry passports valid for six months at least, or re-entry permits. They must also present a proof of availability of funds to spend in India, and a confirmed ticket guaranteeing they will leave the country within 30 days.


Ineligible are Filipinos who reside or work in India, who hold diplomatic or official passports, or who have been declared persona non grata or blacklisted by the government of India.

5 home remedies for cough, colds


MANILA, Philippines - As the temperature continues to plunge here and in other parts of the country, more and more people are starting to get sick. A herbalist shares 5 ways to use backyard plants in treating cough, colds and flu.

At East Avenue Medical Center in Quezon City, for one, some 60 patients are visiting the hospital daily due to cough and colds.

If left untreated for days, cough and colds can lead to pneumonia, which can cause death, warned Dr. Lyndon Leesuy, program manager of infectious diseases of the Department of Health (DOH).

To prevent this from happening, one should drink a lot of water, eat healthy food, have enough rest, and stay away from stress to build enough resistance to diseases, he said.

Dr. Jaime Galvez Tan, herbalist and professor at the University of the Philippines College of Medicine, shared 5 tips to get rid of cough, colds and flu for those who are already sick.

Ingredients for these quick remedies make use of plants that can be easily grown in your backyard. The DOH stressed, however, that these should be accompanied by proper medical consultation to get the full effects.


Lagundi. This shrub, endorsed by the Department of Health, is known for its cooling, antihistamine and muscle relaxant properties. Place 7 clusters of lagundi in a pot with 2 glasses of water and bring it to a boil, then drink it every 4 hours.

Alagaw. This plant, which can only be found in the Philippines, is known for its aromatic smell. Place a handful of alagaw leaves in a pot with water and bring it to a boil, then drink it every 4 hours.

Oregano. Place 3 to 5 leaves of this common herb in a pot of hot water for 15 minutes. Drink the resulting mixture to relieve cough and colds.

Ginger. Cut ginger into long thin strips (julienne). One strip of ginger placed in the mouth can act as a throat lozenge.

Calamansi. This fruit can be mixed with honey (or sugar) and water to make hot tea. Ginger may also be used to make salabat (ginger tea).Both can help prevent colds and soothe a sore throat.


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1 comment:

Rachel said...

Nin Jiom Pei Pa Koa ( may be another choice. i know alot of people use it, its also non alcoholic, though it's effectiveness is not as good as alcohol based cough medicine, but it's still good to use on not so serious sore throat.


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